5 UAE Officials among 39 killed in Taliban’s Kandahar Attack

KABUL: More than 30 people were killed when a detonation of explosives hidden in a sofa occurred inside the governor’s compound in the former Taliban stronghold of Kandahar province during a visit by the UAE ambassador to Afghanistan.

Among the wounded were Kandahar Gov. Homayun Azizia, as well as UAE Ambassador Juma Mohammed Abdullah al-Kaabi.

The Taliban issued a statement Wednesday saying they did not plant the bomb, instead blaming an “internal local rivalry” for the attack.

The attack was one of several in Afghanistan Tuesday, underscoring the growing insecurity in a country where US-backed forces are struggling to contain a Taliban insurgency as well as threats from al Qaeda and Islamic State (IS) group militants.

Just hours before the Kandahar attack, twin Taliban blasts in Kabul tore through the parliament complex just as employees were exiting the compound during rush hour. More than 30 people were killed and 80 injured.

And earlier Tuesday, a Taliban suicide bomber killed seven people in Lashkar Gah, the capital of volatile Helmand province, as the militants ramp up nationwide attacks despite the onset of winter, when fighting usually wanes.

Taliban spokesman Zabihullah Mujahid said they were behind the Kabul explosions, adding the victims were mostly Afghan intelligence agents. The insurgents are known to exaggerate battlefield claims.

The parliament complex has been a prime target for insurgents. In June 2015 Taliban militants attacked the old parliament building, sending lawmakers running for cover in chaotic scenes relayed live on television.

That incident ended two hours later when all seven attackers, including a suicide car bomber, were gunned down by Afghan forces.



Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here